Learning about the Situation in Mongolia Now: bilateral teleconference conducted

from 1 April 2009 Issue of Japanese Deaf News, JFD’s monthly newspaper:

A bilateral teleconference between the Deaf youth in Mongolia and Japan was conducted at the World Bank Tokyo Office Public Information Center (PIC Tokyo) on February 9, 2009, co-organized by PIC Tokyo, Japan NGO Network on Disabilities (JANNET) and the Nippon Foundation. Mr. Tomomitsu Miyahira, a Central Committee Member of the Youth Section of the Japanese Federation of the Deaf, participated in this teleconference as one of the participants representing Japan.

Through the videophone connecting the two countries, the participants conducted active discussions on the theme “Education and Society in Japan and Mongolia through the Eyes of the Youth”.

From the Mongolian side, a report was presented by an instructor of the kindergarten program of a local Deaf school and consultant of the Mongolia Association of the Deaf Youth Section on the current situation of the education for the Deaf in Mongolia.

At a Deaf school in Ulaanbaatar, capital of the nation, 364 students are enrolled with 64 members on the faculty including 4 Mongolian Deaf teachers.

Since 2006, the government and the Deaf Association launched a cooperative program to ensure that school education is provided to all the Deaf children under 6 years old. This program ultimately aims to provide education to Deaf students up to college-level education. At the same time, a problem that they are facing is the difficulty in finding employment after graduating from school or college.

Mr. Miyahira reported on two issues: the political and economical situation of Deaf people in Japan, focusing on the problem of persons with disabilities having to pay part of the cost of services (such as for sign language interpretation) since the implementation of the Services and Supports for the Persons with Disabilities Act, and on the issues related to sign language interpreter services.

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